Collection originally formed by George Temple Nugent Grenville, marquis of Buckingham, from various sources (Thomas Astle's collection, Charles O'Conor's Irish mss., the Essex papers and mss.) Extended by Richard, 1st duke of Buckingham and Chandos, and sold in 1849 by Richard, the 2d duke, to Bertram, earl of Ashburnham. Purchased in 1883 brom the estate of the latter by the British museum, the Irish mss. being transferred to the library of the Royal Irish academy, Dublin. A catalogue of the collection was issued in 1818-19 under title Bibliotheca ms. Stowensiss.